Academy scientists describe 146 new species in 2022

Bavayia jourdani is one of 28 new-to-science geckos within the Bavayia genus in New Caledonia.

Each year, the California Academy of Sciences tallies the new species its researchers have discovered. This year, they logged 146 new species, including 44 lizards, seven fishes, four shark and a toad. More than a dozen Academy scientists—along with several dozen international collaborators—described the new-to-science species.

The scientists made their finds across six continents and three oceans, from isolated mountain peaks to hundreds of feet beneath the ocean’s surface.

“New species research is critical for understanding the diversity of life on Earth and identifying ecosystems most in need of protection,” says Academy Chief of Science Shannon Bennett.

Among the new species are 28 geckos added to the genus Bavayia, more than doubling the number of known species within the genus from 13 to 41. Bavayia is a group of small forest geckos from the mountains of New Caledonia in the southwest Pacific.